The Best Tonight Show Lip Sync Battles

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2. Stephen Merchant, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Jimmy Fallon

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This clip is actually from Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, before he ever took over The Tonight Show, and marks the bit’s debut. Stephen Merchant isn’t the biggest name in America, but he was a great choice to launch this whole thing. He’s basically a ringer—as Fallon credits him at the start of the video, he “invented” this game with Emily Blunt and John Krasinski. His gangly form makes his almost perfect motions and pantomimes more cartoonish and hilarious than they would otherwise be. Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s “Tiny Dancer” only hints at the mastery he’d unveil in his “Rhythm Nation” performance on Lip Sync Battle last month, but he still commits to the song. That’s his thing, of course, and although his theater kid earnestness can be off-putting in weird smartphone ads it kind of works in this context.

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